China rockets atop of the medal standings of the ISSF World Cup in Gabala (AZE) after 11 out 15 events

Gabala, Aug 13, 2015: Chinese shooters won two more medals at the ISSF World Cup in Gabala, Azerbaijan, lifting their team atop of the intermediate medal standings. Kim Chongyong of the Republic of Korea claimed the men’s 10m Air Pistol gold, his second medal in three days, and an Olympic quota for his country.

The sixth competition day of the 2015 ISSF Rifle, Pistol, Shotgun World Cup in Gabala saw the Chinese team rocketing atop of the intermediate medal standings thanks to the gold and silver medals won by Chen and Yi at the women’s 50m Rifle 3 Positions final, and the success of the up-and-coming Korean athlete Kim Chongyong, the 18-year old winner of the men’s 10m Air Pistol medal match.

Chen Dongqi (26), a two-time world cup bronze medallist, secured the women’s 50m Rifle 3 Positions gold medal at the end of a great final. The Chinese athlete finished the kneeling series in the lead with 152.9 points, and continued shooting solidly through the prone series, keeping the lead with 308.4 points. Holding on the first place through the standing series, she won the match with 456.2 points, and 0.8 points of advantage on her teammate Yi Siling (26). Yi, the 2012 air rifle Olympic champion, took silver with 455.4 points, pocketing her second world cup medal of the season in this event, after the bronze she had collected in Munich, earlier this year.

24-year old Anna Zhukova of the Russian Federation followed the two Chinese athletes, claiming bronze with 444.8 points. The two Rio 2016 Olympic quotas up for grabs at today’s final went to Poland’s Sylwia Bogacka (33), sixth with 411.6 points, and to Switzerland’s Jasmin Mischler (23), seventh with 400.0 points.

“I was feeling nervous during the competition, but I tried to calm down by telling myself that I could make it. And luckily it went that way.” Chen said, wearing the gold medal. “I am very happy now, even if I was a bit stressed during the match, I felt really great in the days leading to this world cup stage. Today’s result proves that we have been working in the right direction to prepare the competition.” Chen added.

Claiming his second medal in just three days, the Republic of Korea’s Kim Cheongyong (18) won gold at the following men’s 10m Air Pistol final . The medal also gained him an Olympic quota place for his country. Last Tuesday, Kim had also won the 50m Pistol bronze.

The young Korea shooter closed on 199.0 points, overcoming Kazakhstan’s Vladimir Issachenko, the silver medalist, just before the final shot. In the second part of the final, Issachenko (32) had mostly been in the lead. On the second-last shot, though, he hit a 7.8. that let Kim take over Issachenko, and the first spot.

Issachenko eventually came in 2nd, just 1.6 points behind Kim, with 197.4 points. Slovakia’s Juraj Tuzinsky, who had been leading the final in its early stages, finally took the bronze (178.9 points), his first world cup medal.

Next to Kim’s Korea, the other quota-winning country was Kazakhstan as Issachenko and Rashid Yunusmetov (5th with 138.6 points) secured two tickets to Rio2016 for their country.

“I feel very good,” siad gold medalist Kim. “I was very focused on the competition and I am happy that I secured a Rio 2016 quota to my country. Now I want to go home, and relax.”

Now that 11 out of 15 events has been conducted here in Gabala, the People’s Republic of China is currently atop of the intermediate medal standings with 5 golds, 3 silvers and 1 bronze, followed by USA with 2 golds and 2 silvers, and by the Republic of Korea, with 1 gold, 2 silvers and 1 bronze.

The event is due to continue tomorrow with three more medal matches in the schedule. The competition day will kick-off with the men’s 50m Rifle 3 Positions final at 13.15, and will continue with the women’s 10m Air Pistol and the women’s Trap finals at 15.00 and 18.15 (GMT+5), respectively. —- ISSF

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